Gini Dietrich

10 Ways to Improve Landing Page Conversions

By: Gini Dietrich | April 26, 2012 | 
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We talked yesterday about whether or not blogging is dead and, in the comments, there was a good discussion about the big scary ROI.

Some of the Spin Sucks community thinks the reason companies are abandoning blogs as quickly as they start them is because they haven’t figured out how to generate leads (and rightfully so).

Having specific landing pages tied to different pieces of content is a really effective way to track your leads and provide the sales team with a nice little pipeline.

While they’re not the end all, be all, they sure do help you track the people coming to your website or blog from both organic and paid search.

With that in mind, following are 10 ways to improve your landing page conversions.

  1. Keep it clean! I don’t mean no profanity or dirty pictures. I mean, it should be free of clutter. People should know exactly what you want them to do (subscribe, download, request information, etc.) without any other distractions.
  2. Be consistent. If there is a button to download or subscribe, show it in two or more places…and make it the exact, same button. Use the same language and don’t add anything extraneous.
  3. Keep it short. In fact, if you can get copy on your landing page that consists of phrases and bullet points, it’ll be much more effective. Because there is so much content on the web, people scan. Make it easy for them to get your point without having to read.
  4. Edit, edit, and edit again. Because you have very little copy, it must be perfect. People will not be forgiving if you have five words on the page and one of them is spelled wrong or has a typo or is grammatically incorrect. Make sure it’s perfect.
  5. Brand the page. Not to the point that it’s nauseating, but make sure your logo is on the page so people know who they’re visiting.
  6. Test, test, test. I read an article about a year ago that said we’re so used to seeing blue hyperlinks on web pages that it’s good to change it to red. Also move the call-to-action around on the page and see which placement people click on the most. You may need to change it three or four times before you find the exact, right spot for it.
  7. Drop the navigation. I know this goes against everything we believe about web pages, but you want people to come to your landing page and do something that generates a lead (or even a sale) for you. If you provide navigation, it gives them the opportunity to leave the landing page without doing what they came there to do in the first place.
  8. Vary the call-to-action. You should have a button and text hyperlinks in at least two (if not three) places on the page. For instance, let’s say you have a white paper you want people to download, in exchange for an email address. Create a button that says, “Download Now” and also text hyperlinks that say the same.
  9. Keep it simple. Don’t ask people to fill in all of their information. Decide what is most important to you. I have a friend who only cares about your email address, and he requires it be a company address. And a client only cares about the person’s name and their zip code. Decide what you really need and ask only for that information. Don’t ask people to fill in their name, company, email, address, phone, blood type, SSN, etc.
  10. Do something with the leads! This one kills me that it has to be said, but… the people who give you their information in exchange for something are a very warm lead. Please follow-up with them.

What else is important in improving landing page conversions?

About Gini Dietrich


Gini Dietrich is the founder and CEO of Arment Dietrich, an integrated marketing communications firm. She is the author of Spin Sucks, co-author of Marketing in the Round, and co-host of Inside PR. She also is the lead blogger at Spin Sucks and is the founder of Spin Sucks Pro.

  • You mean I SHOULD have dirty pictures?
     
    But the testing part is so important. The other thing you can use for testing is to have different landing pages to test the effectiveness of off-site call to actions. One email you send out might point to one, while the other email points to another. They might look the same, but it helps you determine how well you are doing with external calls to action. I had one client that was using a QR Code from a store window. The landing page made reference to the fact that they were probably standing right outside of the store and then invited them in.
     
    Also, in light of that, make sure your landing pages are mobile ready.

    • ginidietrich

       @KenMueller LOVE that example of the QR code. I’m stealing it to use when I speak.

      •  @ginidietrich steal away. that’s what this is all about!

  • With Porn being the number 1 type of web traffic you sure it wouldn’t help with conversions on a landing page?
     
    ‘Check out Louie and Tanya in the hot tub and while you do please sign up for our inbound marketing news letter courtesy of Hubspot’
     
    I am telling you I am on to something!
     
    In all seriousness this is a great list and I am appalled at landing pages and I am not a digital person. But I am a salesperson. I often see that is what is missing from landing pages is a person like myself helping out. In fact there should really be two people who design the page…sales….and the average joe and jane who will visit the page. Those two inputs trump any techie or marketing wonks input.
     
    As for the last point number 10. Why create leads if you don’t do anything with them!!!??

    • ginidietrich

       @HowieSPM In fact, porn does work well. It’s kind of a tricky way to gain traffic, but it works.
       
      Regarding #10…you’d be surprised.

      •  @ginidietrich Myself and my brand are extremely comfortable with porn ( http://ryzeonline.com/beauty-of-porn ) , and it’s funny, but I haven’t leveraged it nearly as much as I could be. The opportunity seems huge. I love it when a hilarious side-tangent in the comments opens my eyes 😀
         
        Hmm…. I can feel this blossoming into something more 🙂

    •  @HowieSPM Got to get some of the booth babes from the trade show to hang out on the landing pages. All you need to do is strategically place the link to buy on their…

      • ginidietrich

         @TheJackB  @HowieSPM Bwaahahahaha!

  • Responsive. Design. 

    • ginidietrich

       @jasonkonopinski When you say that to business leaders, it’s fun to watch their heads explode.

      •  @ginidietrich Just make sure you’re wearing your muck boots and hazmat suit before you say it. 

        • ginidietrich

           @jasonkonopinski Seriously. 

        •  @ginidietrich  @jasonkonopinski they obviously are not business leaders if their heads explode. It means they are just bid-ness leaders who probably made it up the ladder via brown nosing or nepotism.

        • ginidietrich

           @HowieSPM  @jasonkonopinski Not all of them. Some are just fearful of the changes.

        •  @ginidietrich  @HowieSPM On a serious note, having a mobile-friendly site is critical, way more important than having a custom app.  
           
          Anecdotally, I’ve seen a bump in traffic after installing WP-Touch on my blog. 

        • ginidietrich

           @jasonkonopinski  @HowieSPM Totally agree.

        •  @jasonkonopinski  @ginidietrich  @HowieSPM Here’s an article on creating a mobile friendly landing page that’s relevant to the discussion. http://econsultancy.com/us/blog/9698-how-to-create-friendly-mobile-landing-pages-part-one?utm_medium=email&utm_source=daily_pulse

  • I was going to comment but Howie’s is too good, I can’t compete with that

    • ginidietrich

       @SociallyGenius You can’t compete with porn? Come on, Tony! Try harder!

      •  @ginidietrich  @SociallyGenius It ain’t easy trumping n00dz, but someone’s gotta do it. 

  • This is a fantastic list of tips, and applying even one of them can help tremendously.  Kind of like you mentioned in the intro, I’ve found that having guest-post specific landing-pages can help a lot.

    • ginidietrich

       @Jason Fonceca Do you have any other tips??

      •  @ginidietrich Tons — I’m a fountain of valuable ideas 😉
         
        11. MAKE YOUR LANDING PAGE A WORK OF ART.
         
        Drop the idea of looking at it as a way to get money, and start looking at it as a chance to share, a chance to communicate, connect, and move people.
         
        Craft it lovingly like you’d craft a great painting, song, or book.
         
        Refine it, practice, learn, show it off, get feedback, and Make It Valuable.  CopyBlogger says “teaching sells”  — so make sure you’re teaching something on your landing page.
         
        You want people, even if they bounce from your page, to be left with the feeling like “damn, that was a really smart, beautiful landing page.”
         
        And if you’re not passionate about doing that, Get Someone Else Who’s A Landing Page Artist involved. Get that passionate copywriter on board. That UI designer. Whatever 🙂
         
        Thanks for asking, Gini!

        • ginidietrich

           @Jason Fonceca LOVE!!

        •  @ginidietrich I get that a lot, and I’m proud to say it 😉 Thanks, miss 🙂

  • Brent@Echelonseo.com

    Good list Gini! Had to smile at number 10, but totally true and often overlooked – think it happens all of the time.

    • ginidietrich

       @Brent@Echelonseo.com It kind of makes me nuts. People.

  • CjShaffer1

    Number 6 is a big one, most people don’t bother to test. You should be split testing every conversion point constantly! You do have to be very careful with #7 for two reasons. First if you are driving any traffic to a landing page via web ads (esp adwords) you get smacked pretty hard for not having nav, they like it when it looks as much like the rest of the site as possible. Additionally, no Nav hurts you from an SEO standpoint. Google and Bing both use Time on Page and Bounce Rate as a part of their ranking systems (albeit a small part). By not including Nav, you are jacking up your bounce rate, because anyone who doesn’t convert is forced to bounce. #endseonerdrant 

    • ginidietrich

       @CjShaffer1 Really good addition, from an SEO perspective. Thank you!!

    • Great points.

      Re. #7 – I want to add that by eliminating the nav, in my humblest of humble opinions, marketers are guilty of placing too much value on the transaction – and too little on building the relationship. I also personally find it disrespectful to the audience. Unless you’re selling “get rich quick” products.

  • Interesting points and its such a great list that I now realize that I need to get a landing page. I’m mean since I fly and all, It only makes sense. All I have is previews of my posts, time to upgrade!

    • ginidietrich

       @SociallyGenius You need a landing page with a giant target so you know where to land.

      •  @ginidietrich  @SociallyGenius May I suggest that you use my example from below. That is the kind of giant target that offers maximum conversions.
        Really, use that and you’ll sign up all sorts of fun prospects.

        • ginidietrich

           @TheJackB  @SociallyGenius I think that is a better idea.

  • I should definitely have a landing page, very good point and advices Gini. As for companies shutting down blogs, is it because blogs suck money together with time, is it because there isn’t a good ROI (but then if you use FB it’s a comedy given its time-money-ROI ratio) or is it because these companies are not really interested in real and not fake customer relations? Are they seeing customers as WW or as human beings? 😉
     
    I mean are they just moving to exploit the next gold vein?

    • ginidietrich

       @Andrea H. | The Hypnotism Weekly I just read an interesting article about social media being like the gold rush of old. Perhaps that’s what it is…everyone is trying stuff to see if they’re going to get rich quick.

  • itsCaitlin0111

    Great article! #4 is a big one – I know I am very unforgiving when it comes to professional websites with gramatical/spelling errors or even just awkward writing overall! *Content is King*

    • ginidietrich

       @itsCaitlin0111 I am too!

  • Hey Gini, Great list and (as always) thanks for sharing.The only point I’d add is that your landing page should be about THEM. It needs to clearly outline the benefits of providing their contact information so they can download your offer. Come to think of it, landing pages are a lot like other aspects of social media.

    • ginidietrich

       @Shelley Pringle Ha! Yes…I guess I assumed people already knew that. But you know what they say when you assume.

  • yoursocialfans

    YourSocialFans.com can help you attract thousands of followers that you can keep informed about any of your product or service offerings instantly. By bringing you a targeted crowd of buyers all you need to do is give them an offer they can’t refuse! Branding is also another successful tool Twitter can provide for your business. As more and more people become followers of your page it builds trust in them and they are more likely to buy from you than your competitor, because they have been following the brand and it’s a brand they trust.

  • How about adding social media buttons to the landing page? That should drive conversions. At least, that’s what an ebook from Hubspot says.

    • CjShaffer1

       @bhas I can’t imagine it has a huge impact on overall conversion rate (although there is something to be said for it providing “social proof”) It would however help to drive traffic into your landing page from social networks which would increase overall conversions.

      •  @CjShaffer1 Yeah, that’s the idea. And you might also want to use the Thank You page to drive even more traffic. Here is how this can work:-
         
        Landing page > User enters email (and also shares a customized Tweet or clicks on Like button) > Clicks on link on confirmation mail that takes them to the Thank You page where the promised resources (PDF, video) can be downloaded > User also tweets a specially crafted tweet that has a link back to the landing page.
         
        Rinse and repeat with every cycle, exposing the landing page to more and more people
         

        • CjShaffer1

           @bhas I really like the idea of having it on the Thank You Page driving traffic back to the Landing page. Now my week is going to be full of A/B testing! #SEOproblems

        •  @CjShaffer1 Good to know you found an useful nugget. Tell me the results of your test
           

  • Well, I have returned, and with a brand new home / landing page for http://ryzeonline.com — I’d love any feedback from the bright minds here 🙂

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